Jill Stein is set to file for an election recount in key battleground states after raising the required US$2.5 million on Thursday. This comes as a group of data experts and lawyers have asked Hillary Clinton’s campaign to push for a recount in three pivotal swing states to ensure that the result was not influenced by unreliable voting methods and cyber-hacking.
In less than a day, the former Green Party presidential nominee was able to raise the required funds through a crowdfunding campaign, which as of Thursday morning had amassed US$2.7 million of the US$4.5 million goal. Stein wants to recount three key swing states, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.
With the money raised so far, Wisconsin is the first proposed recount, while the others would require fulfilling her funding goal. The money is set to cover the costly legal fees for the recount challenges.
For recounts in Pennsylvania, the crowdfunding will require $US5 million by Nov. 28 and for Michigan, $US6 million by Nov. 30
While a recount would significantly help defeated Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, Stein said the recount is “not intended to help Hillary Clinton,” but rather to ensure the integrity of the U.S. electoral system. “We deserve elections we can trust,” said Stein.
Stein and the Green Party say that the election result must be fully certified after a number of allegations of voter results being affected by hacks. “Reported hacks into voter and party databases and individual email accounts were causing many to wonder if our election results are reliable," Stein said in a statement on Wednesday.
Amid mounting allegations of voting manipulation and inaccuracies – particularly over paperless voting machines – a group of experts, including data scientists and election lawyers, have also asked Clinton’s campaign to request recounts in the same states.
The group says there are a number of suspicious trends between areas that used electronic paperless voting machines compared with other areas that used optical scanning machines and traditional paper ballots.
Clinton appears to have performed worse against Trump in areas that relied on electronic voting, according to the group. In Wisconsin, for example, the group says that Clinton may have lost as many 30,000 votes and won seven percent fewer votes in areas that relied on electronic voting.
While computer scientist Alex Halderman believes that a cyber-attack was unlikely, “The only way to know whether a cyber-attack changed the result is to closely examine the available physical evidence – paper ballots and voting equipment,” he told Medium.
Halderman went on to say that the reason why Trump gained a shocking victory over Clinton was that the polls before election day – the majority of which predicted a Clinton win – “were systematically wrong.”
While Clinton won the popular vote over Trump by around 2 million votes, Trump came to power by securing 290 electoral college votes to Clinton's 232.